Sensitization to common aeroallergens in patients at an outpatient ENT clinic


University hospital of Kinshasa ENT Department Kinshasa/RD of Congo


University hospital of Leuven, Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium


Laboratory of experimental immunology KUL/Belgium

B-ENT 2011; 7: 79-85
Read: 787 Downloads: 584 Published: 14 February 2020

Sensitization to common aeroallergens in patients at an outpatient ENT clinic. Objectives: The epidemiology of specific sensitization to inhalant allergens remains unknown in patients at tertiary rhinology clinics. We used skin prick testing (SPT) to assess sensitization to major aeroallergens in order to evaluate the prevalence of specific rhinologic diseases, the frequency of polysensitization and the relationship between nasal symptoms, nasal endoscopy parameters, diagnosis and sensitization.

Methods: A retrospective review of medical records was conducted at the ENT Department of the Catholic University Hospital in Leuven, Belgium. The study analyzed the medical data of patients with rhinologic symptoms suspected of having allergies.

Results: The study included 1326 patients with a mean age of 35 ± 18 years (range: 3-88 years); 52.8% were males. Rhinitis without nasal abnormalities (42.1%), chronic rhinosinusitis without nasal polyps (16.5%) and nasal abnormalities (16.1%) were the most prevalent findings. About 31.6% of patients were sensitive to at least one allergen, and the most common aeroallergens were dermatophagoides pteronyssinus (62.1%) and grass pollen (53.2%). Polysensitization was found in 54.2%. The most prevalent clinical symptoms in allergic rhinitis patients were nasal obstruction, clear/watery nasal discharge, sneezing, postnasal drip and headache. Clear nasal discharge, sneezing, and itchy nose and eyes (p < 0.05 for all) were significantly higher in sensitized patients. In contrast, postnasal drip, headache and purulent nasal discharge were also observed in non-sensitized patients (p < 0.05 for all).

Conclusions: At a rhinology clinic at a university ENT clinic, 31.6% of the patients had positive SPT results, mainly to house dust mites and grass pollen. Among sensitized patients, 54.2% were polysensitized.

EISSN 2684-4907